Gladstone woman told to wear less skimpy outfit in court

EXPOSING her belly-button and piercing, a Gladstone woman wearing a tight, cropped shirt was told her outfit was not appropriate for the courtroom, let alone the cold weather.

Courtney Rose Smith appeared in the Gladstone Magistrates Court to plead guilty to three charges including one count of wilful damage, public nuisance and a breach of bail.

Smith told Gladstone magistrate Melanie Ho that her outfit options were limited, given she had been moving around a lot.

Ms Ho suggested that Smith at least wear a bigger jacket next time.

"You have been before this court before, you should know what is expected."

Getting on with business, police prosecutor Balan Selvadurai told the court the first of Smith's most recent offending occurred October 5, 2016.

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At about 10.35am on that day, Smith was at Centrelink Gladstone sorting out a payment.

However, a number of people 'spun around in their chairs' when a loud, repetitive banging sound was heard from inside the office.

In a fit of rage, Smith was seen repeatedly banging a phone receiver on the desk.

The commotion was so loud and sudden that people stopped to stare at Smith, who then stood up angrily and walked towards the door of the office.

On her way out she kicked the door, sending a big crack shooting up through the glass.

The damage was worth about $1974, of which Centrelink sought restitution for.

Defence lawyer Jun Pepito said his 22-year-old client was in a bad relationship at the time of offending, and was trying to sort out some payments at Centrelink so she could relocate.

He said his client was under emotional stress, and having difficulty with the payments.

He said his client had been attending counselling since, and has spent some time in a women's shelter.

Smith told Ms Ho that life had been difficult with the need to move around a lot.

She said she had been living as a homeless person for the past few months.

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For previous offending, the court heard Smith was already indebted with fines of up to $4000.

Ms Ho said it wouldn't be appropriate to impose that Smith pay restitution to Centrelink, for this reason.

Ms Ho also noted that Smith had completed more than 70 hours of a 100-hour community service order, as part of a sentencing for a prior offence and gave the woman credit for it.

"I understand that your life is in disarray and you are back and forth between residencies," Ms Ho added.

Smith was placed on a two-and-a-half year probation order, subject to medical psychiatric and anger management counselling.

A conviction was recorded.



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